New focus, new name.

Back in the late 1990s, Hammock “Publishing” (our original name) helped to organize a small group of custom publishers into a fledgling trade and professional organization called the Custom Publishing Council. Back then, the member companies primarily published magazines for corporate clients. (Although, at Hammock, we had managed online communities since the Compuserve days.)
But as I’ve noted on this blog recently, the scope of our work, and that of our fellow custom publishers, has broadened to include a wide variety of media beyond magazines — video, audio, all forms of online, digital, interactive and social media.

Fast forward to the present, and that group has grown to nearly 100 firms nationwide who engage in all types of custom content and media development and management. And so, it makes sense that the name of the organization should grow along with the scope of our businesses and rename itself “The Custom Content Council.”
Here is the press release announcing the name change (and note the mention of the CCC’s March 24-26 meeting in Nashville):

New York, NY (February 16, 2010) – Reflecting a new era in custom media – and the monumental impact content has today on all marketing initiatives – the Custom Publishing Council, the leading professional association for custom media, has changed its name to the Custom Content Council (CCC).
“This decision was a long time in the making and I’m very happy we’ve made it. As we enter our 11th year as an association, we need to ensure that we stay ahead of the ever evolving media world. ‘P’ for Publishing sounded ancient,” said Lori Rosen, Executive Director, Custom Content Council. “‘Content’ is a more accurate reflection of what marketers are using to educate, connect, up sell and attract new customers.”
The Council was formed in 1999 prior to the digital, mobile and social media booms. At the time, the business was entirely print focused. Today marketers of all sizes and industries use content, far beyond product descriptions, to drive customer growth and retention. In addition to print, custom content providers are constantly utilizing content in a variety of formats: blogs, video, webzines, emails, podcasts, microsites, newsletters, and more. Custom content is estimated to be a $37 billion industry that continues to outpace other media sectors as it grows 5-10 percent annually.
“Because marketers and content providers are constantly challenging themselves to find ways to offer their audiences the broadest possible mix of relevant content—integrating print, the Internet, video, mobile media, social media, and more—the custom content industry has not only thrived through the recession but positioned itself to grow dramatically in the recovery now taking hold,” said Michael Winkleman, CCC Chairman and President of Leverage Media. “The Custom Content Council’s new positioning helps provide a platform for that growth.”
The Custom Content Council will host its third annual Custom Content Conference in Nashville March 24-26, a 36-hour networking event showcasing high profile marketers and their content strategies. This year’s speaker roster includes executives from Kodak, NHL, and KLM Airlines.
The final component of the transformation from the CPC to the CCC will be the launch of a new website in May 2010, which will include an advance search engine that will help marketers find the right custom content partners.
The CCC is the leading professional organization representing custom publishers in North America and is focused on promoting the growth and vitality of this dynamic marketing discipline. We define custom publishing as marrying the marketing ambitions of a company with the information needs of its target audience. This occurs through the delivery of editorial content – via print, Internet, and other media – so intrinsically valuable that it moves the recipient’s behavior in a desired direction. Marketers across the country, the media and other interested constituencies rely on the Custom Content Council as the authoritative source of industry news, data and trends, information on the effectiveness of custom publishing, and referrals to the top custom publishers in North America.

Onward and upward.